Cardinals playoff odds hang by a thread after loss to Dolphins

Dec 13, 2016, 6:00 AM | Updated: 11:32 am
Arizona Cardinals wide receiver J.J. Nelson (14) catches a pass for a touchdown between Miami Dolph...

Arizona Cardinals wide receiver J.J. Nelson (14) catches a pass for a touchdown between Miami Dolphins cornerback Tony Lippett (36) and free safety Michael Thomas (31), left, during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 11, 2016, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

The Arizona Cardinals’ playoff hopes took a major shot in Miami, where the team fell to the Dolphins 26-23. Arizona finds itself at 5-7-1, and most likely, on the outside looking in regarding the postseason field. At the least, the Cardinals hardly control their own destiny.

However, Sunday’s loss does not completely eliminate them from the playoffs.

According to the New York Times’  NFL playoff simulator, if the Cardinals win the final three remaining games of the season, there is a 10 percent chance the team gets in.

Not good odds, but odds nonetheless.

The teams the Cardinals are battling for a Wild Card spot in the NFC — New York (9-4), Tampa Bay (8-5), Atlanta (7-5), Washington (7-5-1), Minnesota (7-6) and Green Bay (7-6) — all secured victories on Sunday.

Over on FiveThirtyEight, the odds are not kind.

The website gives the Cardinals a less than 1-percent shot at making the playoffs, joining the likes of Carolina, Philadelphia, New Orleans, San Diego and Cincinnati. That’s similar to the New York Times’ simulations when not writing in three wins to close the season.

Last week, the Cardinals had a 10-percent chance of making the playoffs without picking wins.

Arizona welcomes Drew Brees and the Saints next week in the final home game of the season before playing at Seattle and at Los Angeles against a Rams team who will be playing under and interim coach following head coach Jeff Fisher’s dismissal Monday.

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